|SOLAR ENERGY HARNESSED TO IMPROVE WASTEWATER SYSTEM|
|, Jun 01, 2011
Hidden Valley Lake Community Services District (CSD) serves a small, rural population of less than 4,000. The district is solely reliant on the local public utility to provide electricity for their wastewater treatment plant and pumps, but was looking to switch to alternative energy sources.
USDA Rural Development worked with the district to complete an application that would help them develop long-term alternative energy sources for their plant and systems. Through the Water and Waste Disposal program, USDA Rural Development approved a $640,000 loan and $1,091,000 grant to develop a new solar field. The district leveraged this project with nearly $700,000 of their own funds.
Covering approximately one acre, the new solar field will provide nearly all of the electrical energy needs for Hidden Valley Lake CSD to power the sewage utility, and substantially reduce their reliance on traditional energy. As well, the district’s diversified source of energy will hedge its position against the future uncertainty of energy costs.
Construction on this project is planned to start in summer, 2011. Once complete, the residents of them Hidden Valley Lake area will have a modern sewer system that is powered by the sun for many years to come.